Today's feast has caught fire among many Catholics. People are very drawn to the idea that God is merciful beyond our understanding, and anxious to reconcile with us. The Thomas of today's gospel is a ready example of this. Hurt or angry, perhaps both, Thomas wants nothing to do with a so called appearance of Jesus. He insists that he will test the risen Jesus himself by placing his hand into Jesus' side and his finger into the nail marks of the Lord's hands. Only then will he believe that the Lord who was crucified and died is alive again. Indeed, Thomas' heart was as locked as the doors of the room where the disciples were staying.
Hurt and anger do strange things. Not only do they close us off from others, they isolate us from ourselves. Hurt and anger surround us with a wall of protection that gives us a sense of security, but leaves us naked, unmasked, alone,and very vulnerable, just the opposite of what we intend. Thomas needs to let go into God's mercy, but his self protective attitude is inhibiting God's word and work. All of us have experienced this, but sometimes seem unable to act otherwise.
Divine Mercy Sunday insists that we need not fear God or be full of shame. We have only to lift our heads, or shift our eyes to find God waiting, more ready to heal us than we can imagine or desire.
Today, ask God for mercy so that you can heal others.
Have you known someone who was merciful to others who had hurt them?